Saturday, March 19, 2011


Ok. So, before I get any further, you need to know how many times I had to try and type the title of this post before I got it right. Are you ready? SIX. Seriously. I think I lost some brain cells to the fever. But here I am, back in the saddle, still a little wobbly, but bound and determined to bring those cows home. What?

Right. Moving on. Spring is in the air. I can taste it. The forsythias on the corner are sending up plumes of chartreuse, the quince is in full glory, and the roses are setting tiny new leaves. Strange to think that after what was, in my little corner of the west, a rather bleak and sodden winter, my back porch will soon be dripping in lilacs and wisteria and honeysuckle vines. I should make sure to paint it quickly before they take over!

My little nest is finally beginning to take shape, as is my wardrobe. I've gone through yet another ruthless purge in the name of refining my style, and brought in a few key items for spring. Earliest of this crop was my new bell bottom jeans from Emerson Made, but I also ordered a pair of high-waisted ankle zip cropped skinny jeans from F21, as well as a tribal print wrap dress, a scandalously short ivory leather mini, and a creamy fringed cardigan. I was very strict to make sure everything had a place in my closet and would go with at least three other things I already own!

I want to be feminine and polished for spring, but a little bohemian, a little undone, in a very sharp, playful way. I've also acquired a couple of oversized clutches, so much more chic and kind to the spine than those giant bags we've all been carrying to death for the last decade. Take a load off, I say! And I've been stocking up on bright, pretty colors for lips and nails. I find a little polish (big three free, please!) and a polished lip makes a world of difference in how put together I look and feel. I'm 100% crazy about the new reformulated Burt's Bees tinted balm. Its prettier, more moisturizing, and smells better than my old tube of Fresh Sugar Rose. And costs about a third as much. Hey-oh!

Emerson Made Bluebells, $198
Banana Republic oxford, thrifted, $4
Embroidered net blouse, Buffalo, $9
Belt, Target, $12
Walter jacket, thrifted, $12
Christian Audigier clutch, TJ Maxx, $20
Sam Edelman oxford clogs, TJ Maxx, $5

One of the delights/issues with these jeans are that they have no stretch. Whatsoever. None. They are 100% cotton denim (The quality of the material really is exceptional! I've never felt anything like it..) I love a nice snug silhouette with denim, and I'm excited to see how these will age and mellow and soften around my curves, but at the moment they are quite stiff and sturdy, and just walking in them is a bit of a workout! Phew! Also, look, you can just see my new $5 Sam Edelman clogs. Super cute, right? Guess what? They are beastly uncomfortable, and quite wobbly. Sometimes things go on super-clearance for a reason. On a more positive note, today I am wearing my favorite blouse ever, in the world. It's just an old blue oxford I thrifted when I was still in high school, but the cut is sublime and the cotton is so soft it feels like silk, and this precise shade of blue just happens to make my heart sing.

These photos were taken in front of the museum where I work. My little house was built to mimic the style of the original building, and is the same color scheme, a pretty buttery cream with black trim and sashing on the doors and windows, but instead of the brown porch, mine is dark grey. In the early days of the Quaker community here, your house could either be cream with white trim, or white with green trim, and you still see the old homes painted that way quite often. I love the boardwalks around the front of the museum. All the little crocuses (croci?) and bleeding hearts and grape hyacinth are just beginning to push up through the soil. We don't plant anything that wasn't found in Oregon before 1880, and by midsummer the front bed is a riot of yarrow and foxglove and anemone, and the woodshed wall behind me is dripping with baby concord grapes.


  1. Welcome back!

    This post was beautiful. I love your focus for the spring - it makes me want to be more focused (and nothing makes me want to focus). And I love this outfit - the mesh shirt over the oxford is genius.

    And bleeding hearts are one of my all time favorite flowers - I think from growing up in Oregon.

  2. I hope we will get to see photos of the gardens at the museum in full bloom. The jeans look great on you and I am envious of the embroidered blouse.

  3. I love that you clearly have a love for flowers during the quiet kaboom of springtime. And your new style philosophy for the new season! I really love it, I love how you draped the coat over your shoulders like some sort of boss.

    But really, it's cool that you sat down and thought about what direction to go with. I can't wait to see what future outfits you have in store.

    And a genius with colors? Madam, you go too far! :D

    PS: I haven't drawn in forever, but I'll send you an email right away with some really small examples, if that's ok!

    Toast with Charmalade

  4. i love that you have such a defined plan for your style. mine is just more of a mishmash of stuff i like and stuff i don't like. TEACH ME.

  5. sisterfriend, i hear you! i tend to go through seasonal shifts in how i like to dress myself. i think i've been getting in a rut, as my look is sort of developing into "accidental hipster". accidental because my curly hair seems to scream "oh look, i'm into a counterculture" when i'm really not. and also, because i love high waisted shorts. and it is also because i'm too cheap to shop anywhere but thrift stores. when really i'd love to look as classy as this! and somewhat preppy. i'd love some more argyle, cape-cod-esque, maritime style clothing in my closet. i'm a bit ready to shed that accidental hipster layer.

    thanks for the motivation that it's okay to change your look with the seasons, sweet lady!
    love love love the new header, bee tee dubs :)